LBNL Report Number
The question posed in this report is: How can programs motivate these middle income single family households to seek out more comprehensive energy upgrades, and empower them to do so?Research methods included interviews with more than 35 program administrators, policy makers, researchers, and other experts; case studies of programs, based on interviews with staff and a review of program materials and data; and analysis of relevant data sources and existing research on demographics, the financial status of Americans, and the characteristics of middle income American households.While there is no ‘silver bullet' to help these households overcome the range of barriers they face, this report describes outreach strategies, innovative program designs, and financing tools that show promise in increasing the attractiveness and accessibility of energy efficiency for this group. These strategies and tools should be seen as models that are currently being honed to build our knowledge and capacity to deliver energy improvements to middle income households. However, the strategies described in this report are probably not sufficient, in the absence of robust policy frameworks, to deliver these improvements at scale. Instead, these strategies must be paired with enabling and complementary policies to reach their full potential.
Year of Publication
To see the Press Release related to this publication, click here.See related Policy Briefs here:Scaling Energy Efficiency in the Heart of the Residential Market: Increasing Middle America's Access to Capital for Energy Improvements Zimring, M., M.G. Borgeson, I. Hoffman, C. Goldman, E. Stuart, A. Todd and M. Billingsley. Clean Energy Financing Policy Brief. March 2012Extending Efficiency Services to Underserved Households: NYSERDA's Assisted Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Program Zimring, M., M.G. Borgeson, I. Hoffman, C. Goldman, E. Stuart, A. Todd and M. Billingsley. Clean Energy Financing Policy Brief. April 2012Using Credit Enhancements to Leverage Existing CDFI Capacity: Indianapolis EcoHouse Project Loan Program Zimring, M., M.G. Borgeson, I. Hoffman, C. Goldman, E. Stuart, A. Todd and M. Billingsley. Clean Energy Financing Policy Brief. April 2012Alternative Underwriting Criteria — Using Utility Bill Payment History as a Proxy for Credit: Case Study on Clean Energy Works Oregon Zimring, M., M.G. Borgeson, I. Hoffman, C. Goldman, E. Stuart, A. Todd and M. Billingsley. Clean Energy Financing Policy Brief. April 2012Boulder, Colorado's SmartRegs: Minimum Performance Standards for Residential Rental Housing Zimring, M., M.G. Borgeson, I. Hoffman, C. Goldman, E. Stuart, A. Todd and M. Billingsley. Clean Energy Financing Policy Brief. March 2012See related webinars here:Please note: links listed below are via YouTubeFinancing Middle Income Energy Improvements March 6, 2012Many of today's energy efficiency financing programs are rejecting half or more of applicants--these rejection rates are higher among middle income households. How can we overcome the up-front cost barrier by responsibly increasing access to capital? Hear from program managers and financial experts about what's being piloted today and what's being planned for tomorrow.Driving Demand for Middle Income Energy Improvements & Addressing Housing Issues February 14, 2012What will it take to motivate middle income homeowners to invest in energy efficiency? How can programs and contractors address non-energy housing issues (e.g. mold, asbestos, ventilation issues) that need to be remediated in conjunction with energy improvements? Hear from energy efficiency program managers and experts about what works and what doesn't.Overview of Report Findings January 24, 2012This webinar will provide a high level summary of the LBNL report, Delivering Efficiency to Middle Income Single Family Households, which identifies steps that energy efficiency program managers and policy makers can take to deliver significant savings on home energy bills to middle income U.S. households.